Saturday, February 4, 2012

Saturday 2/4

Back to L.A. where it's 75 degrees today. It's warm in Johnson, too - 25 degrees.

I have to say that this month flew past. I was lucky enough to have the summer off from teaching and I went to England for 5 weeks. That seemed a lot longer.

The river and the snow and ice taught me to look more carefully. My laryngitis taught me to listen. Everything eventually lead to my nascent shape poem project.

I ate far more chocolate and drank more champagne in Johnson than I have for the past year -- also terrific experiences.

Writing often changes its voice, depending on what I'm writing. Sometimes it's a bright or colorful voice. Sometimes the voice is quieter/paler and the language comes more slowly, chewily, which is what is happening currently.

I'm back into the swing of things. Grocery shopping, photocopying, lesson plan preparation, cooking and tidying up receipts.

Rolling up my sleeves for 2012!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Thursday 2/2

A frisson of excitement. Last night, at some late night party, someone threw up in the dining hall men's bathroom. They threw newspaper over the evidence, perhaps hoping that it would somehow disappear. Or maybe it was a post-modern art attempt ...

Todd, our maintenance person, is furious. We, the elderly, are unable to stay up late enough to get that drunk. Over breakfast, we had a marvelous time tutting over the incident and congratulating ourselves on being innocently tucked up at 10:15pm.

This melting icicle is outside the elementary school but safely out of the way of the littlies.

Lisa has been making these alphabet letters as going away gifts for us. She's even providing packing
materials so we can get them home safely. My first experience in taking baby art on the plane.

The amazing Hwan's work. We had open studio visits last night.

The one in the box frame costs $2000. None of us had enough spare cash.

Today, I'm doing a couple of short pieces before my last work stint in the kitchen. It's now snowing gently - the real version of Hollywood snow that's made of tiny pieces of plastic.

And one last ice-sculpture pic before I wrap this blog up. I'll be packing my studio this afternoon.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Tuesday 1/31

The left-hand pic is of some kind of mushroom/toadstool item in the forest.

Finally some snow! It was quite warm, though, so I think we'll have more slush and ice tomorrow. Anyway, it was wonderful to go walking along the river this afternoon.

We had the last of the resident reading series last night and I read from the new short.

One of the artists dedicated her month to a project about everyone and produced these wonderful little paint snapshots.

The one on the left was written for me. I've been going around in my pink coat and orange hat all month!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Monday 1/30

Odd mix of snow and slush and more snow. It's meant to freeze tonight.

Lovely cavernous mouth of ice! I was lucky to get this one. I passed by later and it was completely frozen over. It seems weirdly dental.

I had my consultation with the current resident writer, Simon Van Booy. He's an interesting mix

of Chinese/French/Welsh but comes off as a peculiar and semi-proper kind of Brit. Really lovely person and a lyrical writer. He builds into his stories carefully, architecturally. His reading last night was deeply engaging. Everyone decided that he'd be great at audio books.

Spent some time with my friend, Cara, who's been a little under the weather. All of us are feeling this end to our month in various ways. Some are winding down, some are starting new work, and some are looking downright depressed. I'm doodling over some short pieces which are satisfying but not too demanding.

Going to bed early tonight.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Sunday 1/29

After doing laundry and wrestling with the novel edit, I went with Lisa to visit Stowe, a nearby ski resort. We took the ski lift up to the top of the mountain.

The rock was amazing -- it had been wind-blasted with snow. And the skiers and snowboarders were utterly fearless.

On the way up on the gondola, we saw one small boy who was lying face-down in the snow and refusing to move. I completely sympathize.

At the top, we sat in the restaurant and had a drink while we admired the view and the backs of the skiers and snowboarders vanishing off the edge of the world.

This point was only 4,600 feet! It must have been even more stunning from the top of the black diamond runs.

What a glorious day.

During my last few days here, I'll be concentrating on the novel edit and the shape poems. It's so wonderful to have had this opportunity.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Saturday 1/28

After the recent spell of warm weather, the river is running again. It has some interesting ice formations both above and beneath the surface.

It's constantly changing and mesmerizing. I have to keep reminding myself that I'm here to write!

Yesterday, I worked on the visual poems. I printed out a number of pictures and bought a piece of vellum to see what they would look like layered. I quite like the idea of multiple layers of vellum (for the words). Lisa came to my studio and offered really useful insights re: bordering, placement of language and so on. For now, I'm going to concentrate on seeing which images I'm drawn to. It's becoming more obvious that certain ones need less language.

Today, I'm back to the novel edit -- as much as I can do without feedback from the publisher. I'll have to send another email.

Last night we went down to the lounge and watched "Spellbound" (Hitchcock). Ingrid Bergmand and Gregory Peck. Some beautiful camera angles and snappy (and corny) dialogue.

This evening, we're meeting at Lisa's studio. They're going to be knitting and I'm going to play with my shape poems.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday 1/27

The last week! How did we get here so quickly...

It was snowing last night. It was lovely to tilt my head back and taste snowflakes.

Today has been sludgy and rainy. Very exciting getting around. We're back to wind-milling arms and impromptu skating.

Last night's visiting artist, Brian Belott, was terrific. He makes most of his art in the cheapest possible way. Does a lot of collage, paints on post-its or playing cards. He makes little books and stitches them together in the most basic way. They're great fun to look through.

I'm asking him to come to my studio after lunch to give me an opinion on what I'm doing with the snow-ice pics and "shape' poems. I don't know if it's possible to put them into a small book because of the writing.

Afternoon: I tried reducing the pics but I'm not happy with the smaller size. I believe larger might be better in this case. Lisa brought over some larger paper. I'll experiment with that.

We watched "Spellbound" tonight (Hitchcock) after dinner. It was utterly fabulous!